For a large commercial and industrial construction company in North Dakota, the Kobelco CK1100G-2 crawler crane is the right machine for the job and a reliable long-term investment.

Industrial Builders, Inc. (IBI) of West Fargo, North Dakota has a massive fleet of cranes and heavy construction equipment serving a wide range of customers and business sectors. IBI’s fleet includes truck cranes, rough terrain cranes, as well as crawler cranes ranging from 50-ton to 275-ton models.

As one of North Dakota’s largest and most successful bridge builders, IBI recently needed a 110-ton crawler crane to complete a specialized bridge reconstruction project. With the help of RTL Equipment, IBI selected the Kobelco CK1100G-2 crawler crane due to its reliability, ease of setup and operation and its third drum option. In addition, the CK1100G-2 and the Kobelco brand, in general, fit well with IBI’s best-value and long-term investment strategy.

“Kobelco’s crawler cranes are extraordinarily reliable, are built to last and retain their value for a very long time,” mentioned Kevin McCrory of RTL Equipment. The Kobelco CK1100G-2 has a maximum lift capacity of 110 tons, a maximum boom length of 200 feet, and a maximum boom plus jib length of 250 feet (190 ft + 60 ft). The CK1100G-2 features the new Hino engine that complies with EPA Tier IV Final Standards as well as innovative fuel saving systems.

RTL has been renting, selling and servicing Kobelco cranes for over fifteen years. Kobelco’s excellent parts and service operations combined with RTL’s commitment to customer support has built a strong reputation among bridge builders and commercial construction companies throughout the Midwest. RTL is an authorized Kobelco dealer for Iowa, Minnesota, North Dakota, Wisconsin, and Illinois.

 


Your construction equipment is a big investment, so it only makes sense to protect it whenever and however possible. When it comes to your cranes, winter can wreak havoc on them. Cold temperatures, blowing snow, and ice can damage the machine and shorten its service life considerably. But there are steps to take to prevent damage and keep your crane running smoothly through the winter months.

Understanding and Reducing Maximum Loads

Frigid temperatures add stress to any machine and cranes are no exception. While many cranes have limit switches already installed, it’s important to understand your crane’s maximum load and limit them when necessary. Of course, its maximum load is affected by a number of factors, including the position of the load when on the jib, which can impact balance and put undue stress on the machine. Regardless, it’s important to reduce loads whenever you can—especially during the winter—to help protect the crane’s future performance.

Manage Productivity Time

Daylight is minimized during the winter and so are warmer days. That means it’s a good idea to limit the amount of hours your crane is in operation, especially in freezing temperatures. While your machine may be winterized, by limiting the amount of time it’s running during the winter can prolong its service life.

Warm Up Your Machine

Just like you would your own personal vehicle, it’s a good idea to let a crane warm up a bit before you start working. If your crane operates with hydraulic steering, response will likely be pretty slow when in freezing temperatures, so give it time to warm up and save yourself the aggravation. It’s also much safer, since your steering response will be faster once the crane has warmed up to proper operating temps. Additionally, never let the machine sit in the cold for too long without starting it—even if it’s just to run it for a while.

Check for Ice

It may sound simple and seem obvious, but checking your machine for ice before starting it up can mean fewer problems later. When mud gets caked on your machine, ice can get trapped, causing moving parts to get stuck. Ice can lead to cracks in your machinery, ultimately requiring your team to wait while your machine receives crane service. It can also quickly lead to rust, which will break down the crane’s mechanics over time. When taking a look around your machine, pay special attention to the brake area, throttle, and exhaust.

Pay Attention to Battery Life

If you’ve noticed your machine takes a while to start or refuses to start, the battery life should be the first thing you check. Cold winter weather can cause corrosion around the battery of the crane. It’s a good idea to pay close attention to your battery throughout the life of the machine, but especially during the winter. Check your crane manual for how often you can expect to change your crane’s battery.

Add Fuel Conditioner

Winter is the perfect time to add fuel conditioner to the machine. A fuel conditioner can help boost your crane’s performance in any weather, but during the winter, it should be viewed as a necessity. A fuel conditioner changes the characteristics of fuel and results can be monitored so changes can be made as needed. As always, check your manual for condition requirements. It’s also a good idea to use quality fuel to begin with, so you know your performance is at its top level.

Stay Safe

Even when you take all of these precautions, you still need to be aware of the heightened potential for slipping and falling. When you’re entering and exiting the crane, make sure you’re watching your step!

Crane Inspection and Emergency Service

RTL Equipment has been helping businesses around the Midwest since we opened our doors back in 1980. We specialize in sales, rentals, service, and parts for crawler cranes, rough terrain cranes, hydraulic excavators, and much more. Our team of crane service professionals are here for you if and when you experience problems with your machine. If you have an issue with a crane or machine you have obtained from RTL Equipment, call us! Additionally, it may benefit you to inquire about our annual crane inspection service. Regardless, we’re here to answer any questions you may have when it comes to cranes, forklifts, excavators, and other construction equipment.


Doosan established their Construction Equipment Division in 1977 and in the next year, they produced and shipped their first excavator. In the years to come, they would develop their branded SOLAR series of hydraulic excavators, produce wheel loaders, start their own hydraulic machinery and tools factory, and become one of the premier construction equipment companies in the world.  

After decades of providing reliable, innovative construction equipment, Doosan has expanded again. Rising to meet demand, the company has opened a brand new 100,000 sq. ft. distribution center right next to the Doosan Infracore North American headquarters, northeast of Atlanta, Georgia. Built with inventory growth and faster parts delivery in mind, the new location means Doosan will be able to better provide customers and dealers a wider variety of quality service options.

Partnership with DHL Supply Chain

By partnering with DHL Supply Chain, a leader in contract logistics, shipping will be reliable and prompt, leading to reduced cycle times. This means customers won’t have to wait long for critical replacement parts. In fact, most of Doosan’s parts will be included in the inventory at the new location, as well as some lower-volume parts coming in from overseas, which will help reduce shipping costs. Fast delivery (under two days) can be expected on most parts coming from the distribution center.

Director of the parts and supply chain, Clay Caldwell, is excited about the partnership for a number of reasons, not the least of which is the fact that DHL truly understands the way Doosan does business. Plus, they can “provide strategic warehousing options and seamless transportation integration.”

Commitment to Doosan Customers

Director of the parts and supply chain, Clay Caldwell, said that the new distribution center is “a signal of [their] commitment to Doosan customers in the United States and Canada.” Edward Song, CEO of Doosan Infracore North America LLC added, “Doosan is committed to being a top-five construction equipment brand in North America, and this new parts distribution center illustrates our promise to support our dealers and customers with parts availability and prompt delivery.”

Construction Parts When We Need Them

There’s definitely a clear theme: parts are available sooner and faster. That’s a win-win for everyone involved. With around 40,000 stock keeping units available to ship throughout the US and Canada, this is a big move we’re excited about in 2019.

RTL Equipment and Doosan

We proudly offer Doosan machines because we know they’re constantly working toward more creative ways to offer more robust machines that allow construction crews to get their job done effectively and efficiently. From mini excavators that pack a punch when it comes to hoisting and digging in compact spaces to heavy excavators that offer extreme durability while remaining fuel efficient, these machines can help you increase your productivity as sound investments. If you’re ready to learn more, contact us today!


A division of Kobe Steel and based in Houston, Texas, Kobelco Construction Machinery USA, LLC (KCMU) began manufacturing excavators in 1930. The very first short rear swing excavator was invented by Kobelco to allow  work to continue even in areas without much room to move around. This is the kind of innovation they’ve become known for, and they continue to forge new designs that make completing construction jobs easier.

Creating the Kobelco Crane Division

In 2003, Kobelco launched their crane division, which now heavily focuses on crawler cranes. Today, KCMU acts as the distribution point for Kobelco’s Lattice Boom Crawler Crane products in the western hemisphere. Now with seven models available, between 85 and 600 tons, Kobelco cranes are a leader in the crane industry, thanks to their commitment to pushing past industry standards to create stronger, more intelligent machines.

Getting to Know the Kobelco G-Series Cranes

As a leader in hydraulic lattice-boom crawler crane manufacturing, Kobelco is constantly working on improvements in both the functions, energy saving features, and ease-of-use. The line of cranes includes seven different machines that have been re-designed in nearly every way. Engines and hydraulics have improved, energy conservation has increased, and maintenance has been simplified.

Saving Energy with G-Mode

Pairing power with energy conservation has been a priority for Kobelco and G-Mode is in place to do just that. An element included in G-Mode is the energy saving winch control system. By conserving energy, maximum speed can be reached even when in low idle. Additionally, with the Auto Idle Stop feature, the engine is halted whenever the crane is stopped, also helping to minimize fuel consumption.

Cab Space in the G-Series Cranes

The newly re-designed G-Series cranes keep the operator in mind. Cab space has increased to 109.5’ from 77.34’ and each is fully enclosed. The wider door makes it much easier for operators to enter and exit, while more leg room enhances comfort. In addition, views from the G-Series cabs have gotten wider (from 10.8’ to 11.7’), boosting the efficiency and safety of the jobsite.

G-Series Upper Machinery

Upper frames of machines in the G-Series are built with all-welded alloy steel, CAD designed intelligently for the most durability and strength. The dependable wet-type disc brake system allows for quieter operation. It also uses forced oil circulation, which helps to keep the brake temperatures cool even when used for long periods. Because the system is completely sealed, its service life is extended. Again, the operator was thought of, and the brake pedal was moved lower to help cut down on fatigue when in free-fall mode.

G-Series Lower Machinery

High-tensile strength steel that’s completely welded yields stronger machines. Hydraulic travel motors that are driven independently and that include planetary reducers have

 three steering modes, which help operators more easily maneuver the machine even over rough terrain. An independent crawler drive allows for differential track speed steering and track counter-rotation for even more control.

Load Moment Indicator (LMI) Monitor

This 12” touch panel screen includes a screen protector and sunshade, allowing the crane operator to see necessary data even when the sun is beaming down. By introducing universal pictograms, the LMI helps operators work more efficiently. Important information shared includes wind speed, engine speed, over-swing prevention device, and hook height.

 

G-Series Hydraulic System

Improving the hydraulic system was imperative, as the system controls every single operation of the crane, from boom and load hoist to crawler frame installation and removal. Depending on what the job calls for, the hydraulic circuit can be a single pump or dual pump flow. The operator may choose to switch between the two as needed.

Overall Crane Maintenance

If you’re sensing a pattern here, it’s that Kobelco has simplified as much as possible. This includes maintenance. The longer your crane is in operation, the faster your job is completed and the less money you’re wasting on diagnostics and repairs.  

Crane Rentals and Sales

When looking for a crane to purchase or rent, it’s important that the dealer you choose is able to answer any questions you may have and be available for service when necessary. Our professionally trained sales and service staff can help you choose the right machine for the job and keep it running smoothly for the duration. Contact us today to get started.

 


Usually it’s lattice boom crawler cranes getting recognized when it comes to wind turbine installation, thanks to their boom lengths, considerable counterweight, and turbine strength. All of this power is needed to lift the many heavy components of a wind turbine. However, even before a lattice boom crawler crane can make it to the location where the turbine is to be assembled, heavier-duty, tougher machines are needed to haul the parts in place. That’s where the Terex RT 100US came in when IEA Constructors, Inc. needed it.

Constructing the Upstream Wind Energy Center

On rent from RTL Equipment, the Terex RT 100US was brought in to take on a project just north of Neligh, Nebraska. Eighty-one 2.5 megawatt (MW) General Electric wind turbines make up the Upstream Wind Energy Center and are in place to produce 202.5 MW of energy. That’s enough energy to supply every household in Neligh and several in the surrounding area with power.

Rough Terrain Cranes: Unsung Heroes of Wind Farms

First things first: ground preparation must take place before the turbines can get to work for the community. Rough terrain cranes were brought in to do the heaviest lifting, including laying the rebar and steel cages for the bases before concrete could be poured. This is incredibly important work and must be done correctly the first time, so that each turbine is able to withstand high winds and harsh weather, as well as the force generated by the blades themselves.

RT 100US Boasts Automatic and Manual Transmission

Crane Assembly/Disassembly Director, Roger Galloway was impressed with the RT 100’s ability to work in a tight space, while carrying out its heavy-lifting duties. “The RT 100US crane has a small footprint, which means less ground prep work and less money spent on site preparation.” Plus, manual drive is available as well as automatic, which allows the operator to have that much more control. When using automatic, the crane swiftly drives to and from tower sites. Craner operators appreciate the manual transmission when the terrain is especially difficult.

Timelines Respected with Terex

Not only did the RT 100US need to be strong enough to handle such a precise and important job, it had to do so within a strict timeline. Rebar installation mustn’t take longer than six hours and the crane had to place reinforcing rebar panels, which weighed up to 7,000 pounds each. Mike Hedrick, the crane operator on the job, said, “A typical base construction job requires roughly 25 to 30 picks to place the material. The Terex crane allows me to efficiently move the rebar panels into place and adjust the boom from 40 to 100 feet, depending on where they are needed.”

Integrating the Demag IC-1 Control System

An impressive 13,000-pound bolt cage filled with concrete sits in the middle of the rebar, creating a secure base. Thanks to the Demag IC-1 control system integration (new to the Terex RT 100US), the operator had full control. Hendrick could control the dial-down swing function and valve speeds.This allowed him to gain more accuracy, thus saving the entire project time. Galloway added that the RT 100US was actually the better choice over a 130US capacity class crane when it came time to place the cage.

Operator Settings

A bonus of the IC-1 control system is that it allows multiple opeto choose their settings. This, again, cuts down on operating time. When a new operator arrives to relieve the previous operator, they can simply choose their pre-set preferences.

Saving Time with the RT 100US

On this particular job, there were four cranes on hand and many times, one crane needs to return to the site to complete a turbine tower base. That means taking the time to prep and load a crane, transport it back to the site, unload it, and prepare it for work. With the RT 100US, it’s tough enough to withstand transportation without issue, so it can get right back to work on the project, minimizing downtime.

Buying or Renting Rough Terrain Cranes from RTL Equipment

It goes without saying we were pleased with how well the Terex RT 100US handled the extensive job IEA Constructors needed. However, we aren’t surprised. Terex has been on the leading edge of crane innovations for years. That’s why they’re one of the brands we’re proud to offer both for sale and rent. Our professional sales staff is on hand and ready to discuss which machines would work best for you and your next job.